By ERRIN HAINES and RUSSELL CONTRERAS
The conviction of a white Dallas police officer who shot and killed an unarmed black neighbor surprised some African Americans who followed the case.
The trial involved a white officer who said she mistook the apartment of a black man as her own. Most black activists expected Amber Guyger to go free based on past cases involving white officers who shot African Americans.
C.J. Lawrence is a Jackson, Mississippi-based civil rights attorney and founder of the advocacy website Black With No Chaser. He says the verdict offered a clear message that black people "won't become criminals in their own homes."
Activists and observers welcomed the rare conviction, but most cautioned that the outcome was less the result of changing attitudes than a rare set of circumstances.
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